Saturday, June 6, 2015

I LOVE Taylor

Hey everybody!!! 

So Tuesday night we drove up to Taylor, me and two other sisters that have never served in the mountains before and we got here at about 9:00pm. My companion Sister Call is awesome! She's been here for one transfer, she's from Tennessee and she'll be going home in August. We're pretty similar- both sporty and stuff and we get along really well. So that night I packed a duffle full of pioneer clothes and Wednesday morning we woke up and went to the stake center and boarded the buses for trek! All of us missionaries were separated from our companions (which was WEIRD). My family was so awesome! 

Wednesday was the most realistic trek experience I think you could have. We were given an orange for lunch. We had all the goodies our ma and pa snuck with us raided by Natives on the trail. They even took some of the kids oranges that they had been rationing for later. There wasn't a trailer with port-a-potties like on our stake's trek so we had to walk quite a ways off the trail to go to the bathroom. The men left for the Mormon Battalion and the women were left to climb this super steep hill. Luckily there were men dressed in white that were angels that came to our rescue or we wouldn't have made it. In total we walked 15 MILES. It was such a long day. At the end of the night we approached what we thought was going to be our camp and we were driven out of it by Natives and had to turn back around. My feet hurt so badly and every muscle and joint in my legs were cramping and aching from the women's pull. When we finally made it to camp they fed us chicken broth and rolls. We also didn't have tents or anything so we just laid down tarps that night and slept under the stars. It was so cold. It's been a long time since I've seen so many stars though. It was beautiful. 

The women's pull can be related to the trials and steep climbs we have to overcome in our lives. I know that there are angels to help us in our lives, we have family and friends who love us and a Savior who knows exactly what we're going through who we can trust in and rely on. 

Thursday we only walked 2 miles and from then on we camped in the same place. They fed us way better after Wednesday. That day we had many fun stations. There was taffy pulling, they had guys wash the girls hair and girls wash the guys hair, they shot guns with black powder (I wish I could have! missionary rules... My pa kept trying to convince me to take off my badge and take a shot haha), and the best/worst station was the chicken killing. We killed and plucked and cut up a chicken for dinner. It was the grossest thing I think I've ever done. 

Friday was the "Sunday" of the experience. They had firesides and the kids bore testimony. We also had more stations of team building experiences. We had buffalo stew for dinner this night. It was my first time eating buffalo I think. It was pretty good. Later that night we had FHE and me and this recently returned missionary taught the youth in our family about our divine potential and the eternal perspective of the plan of salvation. I love being around the youth and being able to bear my testimony to them! Such experiences are a fulfillment of my patriarchal blessing :) 

Saturday we packed up and only had to trek about a mile or so. My family ran like the whole way. When we reached our destination they had soda and lots of cold watermelon waiting for us. It was delicious. When we got home we showered and crashed for a few hours. We were so exhausted! 

Sunday was so cool. I forgot to mention we cover 3 wards up here so our day is full of church! I'm used to that... In every Sacrament meeting they had the youth speak about their trek experience. It was neat to hear how their appreciation of the pioneers grew and how their testimonies of the Gospel were strengthened. 

Taylor is so beautiful. It's such a cute little town! I traded cacti and palm trees for pine trees and way better weather. It reminds me of Idaho up here. It really is so nice and the people are amazing. I just absolutely love it up here already and I've only been here just a couple of days! The missionary work is mainly reactivation up here. In this tiny town there are 9 WARDS! We do have a few investigators though. 

I'm so sad that Elder Perry passed away. He was such an amazing apostle. I have had this quote by him on my iPad since I got it. It is "Obedience is a choice. It is a choice between our own limited knowledge and power and God's unlimited wisdom and omnipotence." I know that we are given commandments (and rules as missionaries- like not shooting guns) for our benefit and that as we are obedient we are blessed. I have seen that in my missionary work and will continue to strive to do my best! 

I love you all! I can't believe summer is here! Have a great week! 

Sister Richards

​On the trail!

​Plucking the chicken's feathers... ew :/

​The Perry family!

​This watermelon was the best thing I ate all week. The fresh chicken was so chewy!

​Us Sisters after we finished on Saturday. Sister Call, my new companion is the one next to me

​This is Taylor... :)

​this is our duplex. We live on the right and the Spanish sisters live on the left (not much spanish work up here though) We have so many bugs flying around inside, last night we killed a cricket inside... better than bedbugs though. The cemetery is just down the street to the right. The rodeo grounds are just down the street to the left :)

​I can get used to this! Love this place

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